3 Things to Discuss with Your Agronomist

 

Despite the snow and colder temperatures, many farmers are thinking ahead to spring. Spring planning has begun in earnest, and it’s time to talk with your agronomist about some key topics, according to Ryan Brick, Sales Manager with Agtegra.
 
Soil Fertility Is the Foundation
Talk with your agronomist about what your soil fertility levels are. How much nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, micronutrients are in your soil already? Are soil pH levels where they should be?
 
“Your soil fertility test results are the foundation of a fertility plan for the coming year’s crop,” says Brick. “They give you a guide of how much fertilizer should be applied and what the cost per acre will end up being.”
 
You also have the option to build nutrient levels in anticipation of future crop years. Do you just need to apply enough fertilizer for this year’s crop, or for future crops, too?
 
Your agronomist can also help you determine if you should try zone management, and if so, which fields.
 
“For example, if the previous year was very dry, the soil might have a lot of leftover nutrients, which might be more beneficial to plant corn again this year or perhaps wheat,” says Brick.”
 
Choosing the Right Hybrid & Seed Treatments
Communicate with your agronomist about how much seed you anticipate needing for the coming crop year so they can help you order it, if you haven’t done so already.
 
“Plan ahead and review last year’s yield data so you know your seeding rates for your fields and can calculate exactly how much seed you’ll need,” Brick adds.
 
Your agronomist can also provide recommendations on any different or new seed treatments you should consider using.
 
There are some new plant growth regulators on the market that might be a good fit,” Brick says. “For South Dakota farmers who are concerned about pheasants eating corn kernels before emergence, there are seed treatments that prevent this.”
 
Plan for Chemical Use, Too
The final piece for planning should be your intended chemical use for the coming crop year. Your agronomist can help evaluate the proper pre and post emergence chemistries to maximize effective weed control.
 
“Many farmers have their own sprayers, but a spring time crunch can lead to application timing issues,” Brick says. “Having a proper plan with your Agtegra agronomist will help ensure a self-applied application or a planned Agtegra application will be the most efficient and effective plan on your farm.
 
Contact your Agtegra agronomist to get your 2019 growing season plans in place today. Spring will be here before you know it!